The Point Two ProAir air vest works in three ways — to distribute pressure, absorb shock and support the spinal column in the event of a rider fall.
The CE-marked ProAir has been extensively assessed and evaluated at leading test facilities including the Transport Research Laboratory and SATRA Technology Centre, in the UK, and CRITT Sport Loisirs in France.
To earn that CE 89/686/EEC certification, the ProAir had to achieve the exacting standards required for a horse riding inflatable item under European Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) legislation. This included laboratory assessments of the speed of inflation, the time taken for the airbags to reach a level of inflation capable of providing adequate protection and energy dissipation — as well as crucial testing that the jacket does not feature any materials or components that could prove harmful to the health of the wearer.
Point Two also carried out its own, independent testing on the jacket’s performance.
The Transport Research Laboratory reported the following observations while testing the ProAir performance in two impact scenarios during April 2010:
- When used with a BETA level 3 body protector, the ProAir jacket improves protection to the spine by up to 69%
- The ProAir jacket provides approximately 45% more protection for the lower spine than a BETA level 3 body protector alone
- Used with or without a BETA level 3 body protector, the ProAir jacket reduced the risk of rib fractures and underlying organ damage, by as much as 20%
Point Two recommends that the ProAir is worn with a traditional body protector (such as the Hows Racesafe 2010) for optimum protection. But it can be worn alone — and very often is by riders schooling, hacking and breaking horses at home.